Competition Office Scrutinizing TikTok, Viber, Google
Photo by XanderSt / Shutterstock.com
Hungary's Competition Office (GVH) is probing certain services offered by TikTok, Viber, and Google, the watchdog's head said in an interview with Mediapiac.com published on Tuesday.
Csaba Balázs Rigó noted that little can be revealed of the details as the probes are ongoing, but he said the question in the case of Viber is whether users can pay for a service with their data. GVH's analysis of TikTok's practices suggest the video-sharing platform does not properly inform users of the way their data is used, and issues have also been raised with regard to advertising, he added.
GVH is probing Google to determine whether it is violating anti-trust rules by putting links to its own services, ahead of competitors', when users search for song lyrics, he said.
Rigó said many users fail to read the fine print in general terms of service contracts with online platforms and don't realize the extent to which their data is used, even though the value of that data "may far exceed" the size of subscriber fees.
Addressing a government decree exempting the acquisition of Vodafone's local business by listed ICT company 4iG and the state from GVH's scrutiny, Rigó pointed to global precedents for such a measure. He claimed the deal could benefit the public as the entry of a new, stronger player spurs competition on the market.
SUPPORT THE BUDAPEST BUSINESS JOURNAL
Producing journalism that is worthy of the name is a costly business. For 27 years, the publishers, editors and reporters of the Budapest Business Journal have striven to bring you business news that works, information that you can trust, that is factual, accurate and presented without fear or favor.
Newspaper organizations across the globe have struggled to find a business model that allows them to continue to excel, without compromising their ability to perform. Most recently, some have experimented with the idea of involving their most important stakeholders, their readers.
We would like to offer that same opportunity to our readers. We would like to invite you to help us deliver the quality business journalism you require. Hit our Support the BBJ button and you can choose the how much and how often you send us your contributions.